Forton racer Tom Boardman has returned to the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship with a bang after a seven-year break.
The experienced driver enjoyed an excellent weekend at Brands Hatch, claiming a trio of top 20 places and then produced a fantastic tactical move to take fourth in the second race live in front of millions on television.
Boardman last competed in the BTCC’s top flight in 2010 and 2011 in a family-run SEAT Leon, taking an overall victory at Knockhill in 2011.
Since then, he has taken part in the World Touring Car Championship and had an outing in the TCR International Series in 2015, racing a Ford Focus ST.
On Sunday, it was a miserable day in Kent weather wise and Boardman was happy to take his time getting to know the new car.
Race one saw a solid performance with him showing glimpses of what will surely become a good season when he has the car the way he wants it.
Race two saw Boardman back on the leaderboard when as the rain stopped he and the team’s brave decision to run normal racing slick tyres rather than the wet tyres others were using really paid off.
Controlling a car on slick tyres requires great skill while a circuit is wet and drying, but the rewards can be great and Boardman blasted through the field from 18th at the start to finish fourth.
The final race of the day saw another handy top 20 finish and things are definitely looking good for the Lancashire ace.
“The car feels great,” Boardman said.
“But it is like anything else new. We need to adjust the car to suit me and I need to adjust to the car.
“For a first weekend back, that was one hell of a ride. We will move forward from here and I am sure that we will make a few teams sit up and take notice. I’ve won in the BTCC before and I wouldn’t rule it out again this year.”
This year is a memorable one for the championship as they celebrate 60 years of racing.